Mayor de Blasio has not been known for being very accessible to the media -- but he recently changed course and indicated he'll be more open to the public. NY1's Grace Rauh filed the following report.
Mayor de Blasio stood behind the podium Friday and answered, by our count, 54 questions from reporters assembled before him.
He was grilled about homelessness, pedestrian safety, affordable housing, and the consultants who advise him while also representing private clients with business before City Hall.
"They don't lobby, that's the point," the mayor said. "They haven't raised that type of issue to me. It's just as simple as that."
It was the first time that de Blasio took so many questions from the media, after he recently has faced criticism over his reluctance to answer questions on topics he does not pre-approve.
Everything was fair game Friday, however.
But don't expect de Blasio to hold similar news conferences on a regular basis.
"I have a job to do. Much more important than giving the answers to questions is actually doing the work," de Blasio said. "That's what I am paid for: paid to get the job done. And that's where I am going to put my time and energy."
The mayor said in the future reporters can expect him take his message directly to New Yorkers more through town hall forums and radio call-in shows.
The change in press strategy may be the result of some recent lackluster poll numbers for the mayor; a majority of city voters said they think the city is headed in the wrong direction.
De Blasio pushed back hard against that idea at the press conference.
"I talk to a lot of people and I have been watching life carefully in this city for decades," the mayor said. "It is a fact that the quality of life is better."
The mayor seems to think bypassing the press will help him make that case to more New Yorkers.